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Sources of clean water for drinking, cooking, and bathing are in scarce supply in northern Uganda. Water borne diseases
are a major force contributing to high death rates and low productivity in northern Uganda’s IDP camps. The traditional
response to this problem is to drill new, shallow borehole wells that are expensive, difficult to maintain, and susceptible
to contamination. In addition, the drilling teams are usually not composed of local labor and utilize imported pumps that
do not contribute to local economy. Corruption can also impede access to water, as local land owners sometimes place
locks on the village pump requiring villagers to pay for water that should be accessed freely.
In response, Connect Africa is distributing rain water harvesting systems and training leaders to build the systems
themselves. The rainwater harvesting system uses gutters to channel rainwater from a CARC or house roof into a tank
protected from insects and contamination. A rainwater harvesting tank made from ISSB bricks is stronger, longer lasting,
and one third of the price of a traditional plastic tank imported from southern Uganda. These tanks are produced in both
2,000-litre household sizes, as well as in larger 10,000-litre community sizes. Connect Africa’s rainwater harvesting
systems have proven to be a sustainable clean water solution for northern Uganda.
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